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Employee ‘TBD’ Projects Coming Soon to WSJ.com

JasonBelliniPicWall Street Journal executive editor Alma Latour took time out from his busy schedule to run down with journalism.co.uk’s Rachel Bartlett the various ways his newspaper is endeavoring to remain cutting-edge.

Employees rely on Storyful, recently purchased by parent News Corp., and video-chat service Spreecast; they get to participate in an internal, one-week immersion known as Digital Journalism at Dow Jones (DJ at DJ); and, for a potential cash prize, they participate in a new contest known as “TBD:”

By setting up a dedicated contest which encourages its staff to think innovatively, the news outlet can drive new thinking from potentially new sources.

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Freelancing 101Freelancing 101 starts in less than a week! Don't miss your last chance to save $25 on full registration for this online boot camp with code FLANCE25! Starting April 28, this online event will show you the best way to start your freelancing career, from the first steps of self-advertising and marketing, to building your schedule and managing clients. Register now! 

The Upshot, NY Times’ Answer to FiveThirtyEight, Launches

The Upshot, The New York Times’ answer to the departure of Nate Silver and FiveThirtyEight, is now live. The site is edited by David Leonhardt, the Times’ Washington bureau chief.

Just like FiveThirtyEight, The Upshot is focused on the intersection of data and news. And just like FiveThirtyEight, there will be forecasts made about the political world. Already, The Upshot has an interactive model that analyzes every Senate race in the upcoming midterm elections.

“We created The Upshot to serve as a destination for readers who want to deepen their understanding of the issues and policies that influence their daily lives,” said Leonhardt, in a statement. “Using a conversational tone and a rich stream of graphics and interactives, The Upshot will build on what the Times already does so well — provide analysis of the news happening all around us. We also invite our readers to become a part of the conversation.”

Time will tell if Times readers come to love The Upshot as much as they did FiveThirtyEight. Even if they don’t, the Times is smart to try and recapture some of that data driven magic.

See below for the full team of editors and contributors working on The Upshot.

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Boston Papers Celebrate Marathon Runners

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Boston area newspapers did their best to honor those running in today’s marathon. It’s moments like these when papers truly shine. They have a unique ability to freeze a moment in time forever.

The 2014 Boston Marathon is already underway. We’re sure we’re not the only ones hoping it provides some sense of closure and healing to those impacted by the bombing.

See below for the Boston Globe and Metro Boston’s covers.

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Daily News Publishes Daily News Exclusive

NY_DNAs you know, we here at FishbowlNY hate the term “exclusive,” mostly because absolutely no one cares, but also because it’s rarely actually an exclusive. However, we have to hand it to the New York Daily News. It’s taking the term to new heights (lows?) by publishing an “exclusive” about a Daily News story.

Today, the paper ran the headline “EXCLUSIVE: Daily News Campaigning to Save City’s Beloved Carriage Horses,” and then explained its fight to rescue the equines, complete with an op-ed by Liam Neeson. Of course this is not an exclusive.

At best it’s simply an article; at worst, a press release. But the Daily News’ editors felt like slapping “exclusive” on there because why the hell not? Everyone knows it’s a completely meaningless word anyway.

Bravo Daily News. Or rather, EXCLUSIVE: FishbowlNY Says Good Job Daily News.

On His 67th Birthday, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Starts New Gig: Los Angeles Register Columnist

This is exactly the kind of creative thinking that is required to connect with today’s busy and much better-served-than-before savvy media consumers. As part of the official launch today on the west coast of daily newspaper the Los Angeles Register, columnist Kareem Abdul-Jabbar highlights his favorite LA-themed movies.

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The opening paragraph quote from Charles Baudelaire also reminds us how even more cerebral things might have been if coach Phil Jackson had guided the Showtime era Lakers. One of the most intriguing categories in Jabbar’s three-by-three list is TOP THREE FILMS ABOUT THE HOOD. This portion of the article includes:

American Me: Directed by and starring Edward James Olmos, American Me spans thirty years (from the 1950s to the 1980s) of gang life in the Latino community. The gangster life, and its influence on the community, has never been portrayed with so much dark conviction.

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Texas Monthly to Sue NY Times

The parent company of Texas Monthly is suing The New York Times for hiring Jake Silverstein — Texas Monthly’s editor — as the new editor-in-chief of The New York Times Magazine.

According to the Times, Emmis Publishing is claiming that that the Times influenced Silverstein into breaching his contract. The lawsuit states that Silverstein’s contract expires in February of next year.

Eileen Murphy, a Times spokesperson, described the lawsuit as “inexplicable.”

“We had an understanding with Emmis during the search that Jake would be permitted to exit his contract with Emmis and take the job,” Murphy told the Times. “We believe there is no basis for a lawsuit. We look forward to having Mr. Silverstein join the Times next month and help us shape the future of the magazine.”

This probably isn’t how Silverstein envisioned the next step in his career beginning.

Correction (4/12 9:20 am):
An earlier version of this post stated that Emmis was suing the Times and Silverstein. Emmis is suing only the Times.

Daily News and Post are Enjoying the Sharpton Informant Story

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The New York Daily News and The New York Post are really enjoying this story about Al Sharpton being an FBI informant. Though Sharpton has been plagued by rumors that he was informant during the 80s for years, The Smoking Gun ramped things up by publishing documents that provide new details.

Sharpton admitted cooperating with the FBI/NYPD unit that was targeting the Genovese crime family, but insisted he wasn’t a “rat.” ”I am not a rat,” Sharpton tweeted. “I am a cat, I chase rats thugs, gangsters, bigots, drug dealers. Bad cops whoever out of our community. That is right.”

Not only did Sharpton place quotation marks around that great statement — as if he was quoting someone else — he gave the Daily News and Post more ammo for their covers. We think the Daily News won this round, but only because that is one creepy illustration.

The Star-Ledger Cuts 167 Jobs

Well, this is depressing. Advance Publications’ The Star-Ledger is cutting about 167 jobs, including 25 percent of its newsroom.

The layoffs will mean the paper will be out 40 of its 156 reporters, editors, photographers and other various staffers.

According to NJ.com, the massive layoffs were not surprising:

The cuts were not unexpected, with the announcement last week of the creation of a new media company—NJ Advance Media—which is to provide content, advertising and marketing services to all the newspapers owned by Advance Publications in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Sales and marketing functions of the new company will launch in June, with content operations to begin in September, according to executives.

Even with the consolidation and cuts at the Star-Ledger, the paper  —  along with the others impacted, including The Times of Trenton, The South Jersey Times and The Express-Times of Easton, Pennsylvania — will continue to publish each day.

NY Post to Launch Entertainment Vertical

nypostlogoThe New York Post is getting set to expand its entertainment coverage. Capital New York reports that Mark Graham, who has worked at VH1, MTV and New York’s Vulture, is in charge of leading a new pop culture centric vertical on NYPost.com.

Graham is currently hiring an online team to help create content for the vertical. He reports to NYPost.com’s chief, Remy Stern.

The Post already has Page Six — which will tell you about the time Kim Kardashian tried to take a selfie with an elephant — so an entertainment vertical seems like a natural fit for the paper.

Pew Study: Newspapers Account for 60 Percent of Total News Revenue

According to Pew Research Center’s latest State of the News Media study, the newspaper industry might not be as doomed as we all think.

When crunching numbers on the many different types of news media, (like digital, local TV, cable TV, etc.) Pew found that newspapers brought in $38.6 billion in revenue, about 60 percent of the total news revenue of $63.2 billion.

Newspapers didn’t just grab the top slot, they dominated. No other media was even close. In fact, no other media came close to $10 billion. The runner-up was local TV news, with only $8.9 billion.

About $25 billion of newspapers’ revenue comes from advertising, and $10 billion comes from print and digital subscriptions.

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